Province of Canada, Journals of the Legislative Assembly of the Province of Canada [Federation of the Provinces], (7 July 1858)


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Date: 1858-07-07
By: Province of Canada (Legislative Assembly)
Citation: Province of Canada, Legislative Assembly, Journals of the Legislative Assembly of the Province of Canada, 6th Parl, 1st Sess, 1856 at 815.
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Mr Galt moved to resolve, seconded by Mr. Pope, and the Question being proposed,

1. That in view of the rapid development of the Population and resources of Western Canada, irreconcilable difficulties present themselves to the maintenance of that equality which formed the basis of the Union of Upper and Lower Canada—and require this House to consider the means whereby the progress which has so happily characterized this Province may not be arrested through the occurrence of sectional jealousies and dissentions: It is therefore the opinion of this House that the Union of Upper and Lower Canada should be changed from a Legislative to a Federative Union by the sub-division of the Province into two or more Divisions, each governing itself, in local and sectional matters, with a general Legislature and Government for subjects of national and common interest; and that a Special Committee be now named to report on the best means and mode of effecting such constitutional changes.

2. That considering the claims possessed by this Province on the North Western and Hudson’s Bay Territories, and the necessity of making provision for the government of the said Districts, it is the opinion of this House, that in the adoption of a Federative Constitution for Canada, means should be provided for the local Government of the said Territories under the General Government, until population and settlement may from time to time entitle them to be admitted into the Canadian Confederation.

3. That a General Confederation of the Province of New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Newfoundland, and Prince Edward’s Island, with Canada and the Western Territories, is most desirable, and calculated to promote their several and united interests, by preserving to each Province the uncontrolled management of its peculiar institutions, and of those internal affairs, respecting which difference of opinion might arise with other members of the Confederation, while it will increase that identity of feeling which pervades the possessions of the British Crown in North America; and by the adoption of an uniform policy for the development of the vast and varied resources of these immense Territories, will greatly add to their national power and consideration;—and that a Special Committee be appointed to report on the steps to be taken for ascertaining, without delay, the sentiments of the inhabitants of the Lower Provinces, and of the Imperial Government, on this most important subject.

Mr. Brown moved, in amendment, sedconded by Mr. Foley, That all the words after “that” to the end of the Question, be left out, and the words, “it is expedient that the Representation of the people in the Canadian Parliament should be based on population, without regard to a separating line between Upper and Lower Canada,” inserted instead thereof.

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